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THE NOONER for February 5, 2013
Happy Tuesday! Thank you all who voted on the Washington Post's The Fix state top blogs contest. I'm not suggesting The Nooner is the best, and I'm casting votes for a few others that I regularly link to here, and invite you to do the same. Apparently, the site wasn't working well last night on iOS devices, so here's the link again now that you're likely sitting behind your desktop. Also, here's the link to get a free standard LegTrack account. Thanks for your patience as the bugs get worked out!
Beware, I woke up at 3:45, and thus have a lot to ramble about.
7,000+ SUBSCRIBERS: We blew past the 7,000 subscriber milestone last week. Welcome newbies, here's how to subscribe to the ad-free version and support this endeavor, and here's the super-simple Nooner survey that you fill out to tell me what I'm doing right and wrong.
FOLLOW THE MONEY: Professional Engineers in California Goverment (PECG) has been poring through the campaign finance documents filed last Friday and found a gem. One of their adversaries--the American Council of Engineering Companies in California (ACEC-CA)--reports giving $400,000 to Americans for Job Security in the 7/1-12/31 filing period. And, if Americans for Job Security sounds familiar, it is because it is the group identified by Arizona-based Americans for Responsible Leadership as the true source of the $11 million given to the Small Business Action Committee's effort opposing Jerry Brown's Prop. 30 tax hike and union-curtailing Prop. 32. Oh, and to make it more confusing, The Center to Protect Patients Rights acted as an intermediary between Americans for Job Security and Americans for Responsible Leadership. Or, for the visual folks:
ACEC-CA ($150k+$250k) => Americans for Job Security => Center to Protect Patients Rights => Americans for Responsible Leadership => Small Business Action Committee
Specifically, ACEC-CA gave $150,000 on July 24, 2012 and $250,000 on September 25, 2012.
Now, one may be asking why a California PAC would go through three laundromats only to have to report it? Well, by giving to an out-of-state PAC, the expenditure was not required to be disclosed immediately under current California law. That's likely to change through FPPC regulations, although it could lead to a revisit of Citizens United.
Among the committees I have in ElectionTrack, ACEC-CA is the only one I can find that gave to Americans for Job Security.
DON'T MESS WITH JERRY: It seems we have a bit of a kerfuffle between Texas Governor Rick Perry and California Governor Jerry Brown over the former's participation in a campaign to woo California businesses to the Lone Star State.
John Myers reports "The ad -- a small purchase of only $24,000 on six California radio stations -- was probably designed for news attention as anything."
The LAT's Laura Nelson covers a response from Brown about the alleged poaching: "'Of course they're coming here,' . . . 'So are the British coming here, so are the French, so are the Russians, so are the Chinese - everybody with half a brain is coming to California. So Texas, come on over."
VC Star's Timm Herdt writes that Perry will be in Oxnard next week to woo Haas Automation as part of the campaign.
Of course, there's this about Rick Perry, from Dem polling firm Public Policy Polling: "PPP's newest poll finds that only 31% of voters think Perry should seek reelection next year, compared to 62% who think it's time for him to step aside. He's among the most unpopular Governors in the country, with only 41% of voters approving of him to 54% who disapprove."
MY TAKE: Governor Brown loves the Perry move, as it will help keep tax-and-spend demands by the two-thirds Democratic supermajorities under control and will provide additional momentum for CEQA and other regulatory reforms. Moderate, bipartisan reform can and will happen in an ever-evolving regulatory structure, like last year's lawsuit-reforming SB 1186.
Meanwhile, the normal cycle of new companies being born in California by people willing to work amazingly hard while paying ungodly rents and incurring more regulations will continue. As the new companies mature, the low-margin jobs will move out of state, and more the entrepreneurs will move on to the next big thing. It's the California life cycle.
OVERSIMPLIFYING, BUT YOU GET THE POINT: CalTech begat Beckman begat Shockley begat Hewlett Packard begat Fairchild begat Intel begat Apple begat Pixar begat Netscape begat Yahoo begat Apple 2.0 begat Yahoo begat Google begat Facebook begat Zynga begat hundreds of the next big thing that can be found in San Francisco, down through the peninsula, to the west side of Los Angeles to the gas lamp of San Diego. The next big thing is here, and Texas can have the low-margin elements of the last one.
Meanwhile, Texas and California are mixed on lawmaker disclosure and ethics. [Texas Tribune]
ONE MONTH: The Los Angeles municipal election is one month from today, and PAV ballots are landing in mailboxes this week. On the ballot are the offices of mayor, city attorney, controller, 8 city council seats, 3 LA Unified school board seats, and 3 community college board seats.
NONPARTISAN AURAL PLEASURE: I have yet to link to the Capitol Connection podcast released last Friday featuring John Myers and Anthony York.
SAD STORY: Couple dead in shooting remembered as stars off the court and on [OCRegister]
Frizzelle came to the Assembly after defeating Dennis Mangers, who retired as lobbyist for the California Cable and Telecommunications Association. After the 1991 court redraw of the Assembly redistricting plan, Frizzelle was put in the same district with fellow Assembly Republicans Tom Mays and Doris Allen. Allen prevailed over the two gents, and took a grudge toward the Orange County's conservative Republican leadership to Sacramento (Frizzelle went on to be president of the conservative California Republican Assembly). She held that grudge and served until being recalled in November 1995 for her role in holding the last grip of the reins of Willie Brown's speakership. Allen died in 1999 at age 63 in Colorado Springs. Mays is a lobbyist for Pacific Life Insurance Company.
TRIVIA: What was Doris Allen's predecessor, Chester Wray, known for?
TOP HEADLINES ON AROUNDTHECAPITOL.COM AS OF 12:00PM
Jerry Brown Says 49ers 'Screwed Up' But Showed 'Intestinal Fortitude'
David Siders @ blogs.sacbee.com
Gov. Jerry Brown doesn't watch a lot of sports, but he caught the Super Bowl last night and offered an assessment of how the San Francisco 49ers played. "Sure they screwed up," Brown said on the Bay Area's KPIX-TV. "But they came back, and that, that kind of energy and intestinal fortitude and guts and imagination, they still demonstrated. It was close. It's exciting. I mean, more than that you really can't ask for."
Tax Move May Be At The Local Level :: Fox&hounds
Despite talk in Sacramento that pro-tax advocates might want to push for more statewide tax increases, the move to raise revenue through tax increases well could focus on local governments. Governor Jerry Brown has been clear that he wants the state to live within its means. The state already secured two tax increases through Propositions 30 and 39 last November.
California Teachers Pension Fund Faces $64 Billion Deficit
Dan Walters @ blogs.sacbee.com
The trust fund that provides pensions to retired teachers has a $64 billion deficit and would need a $4.5 billion per year infusion of revenue to become fully solvent, according to a new internal study.
Texas Governor Sets Sights On Haas Automation In Oxnard
Timm Herdt @ vcstar.com
Haas Automation Inc. in Oxnard will host a visit from Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Feb. 12, as the governor kicks off a campaign in California to lure businesses to his state.
Ex-governors Call For Changes To Environmental Law
Three of California's former governors have banded together to urge an overhaul of the state's landmark environmental law, saying the 40-year-old measure needs to be "modernized" to help speed the Golden State's economic recovery. The message echoes that of Gov....
Jerry Brown Responds To Rick Perry
David Siders @ blogs.sacbee.com
Gov. Jerry Brown said today that the radio ads Texas Gov. Rick Perry is voicing in California are nothing more than a "few tricks," doubtful they would influence businesses to leave the Golden State.
California's Tax Surge Could Be Dangerous
Dan Walters @ sacbee.com
Given that history, one is not inclined to be sanguine about how Brown and legislators will handle what could be another windfall.
Correctional Officers Lose Bid To Flip $5 Million Defamation Case
Jon Ortiz @ blogs.sacbee.com
A federal appellate court has ruled that a $5 million judgement against California's prison officers' union will stand, brushing aside the group's arguments that the sum is excessive and that a federal jury's verdict in the case was wrong.
Capitol Leaders Offer Legislation To Expand Medi-Cal
Greg Lucas @ capitolweekly.net
Democratic leaders of the Assembly and the Senate have proposed legislation to carry out a federal mandate starting in 2014 to expand eligibility to 1.6 million Californians for Medi-Cal, the stateâs health care system for the poor.
Manson Follower Parole Decision In Gov. Jerry Brown's Hands
It is up to Gov. Jerry Brown whether to release a now-70 follower of murderer Charles Manson. For at least the second time, the California Board of Parole Hearings has recommended the release of Bruce Davis, imprisoned since 1972 for...
British lawmakers to vote on gay marriage bill
Dozens of Conservative lawmakers are expected to vote against the proposed bill later Tuesday, but it is expected to pass with support from the vast majority of lawmakers from the left-leaning Labour Party and Liberal Democrats.
Greuel, Garcetti Offer Strong Commitments To City Hall Union
David Zahniser @ latimes.com
Courting the important labor vote, the controller promises to be a 'champion' for members of the SEIU. Garcetti vows to make department heads reapply for their jobs.
Jerry Brown, Rick Perry Spar Over Whether California Or Texas Is Better For Business
David Siders @ sacbee.com
Texas Gov. Rick Perry is on the radio in California this week, criticizing the Golden State in a new advertisement and urging businesses to flee to Texas.
California Finances Praised But Not Upgraded By Moody's
A major Wall Street rating agency said Monday morning that Gov. Jerry Brown's latest budget proposal shows California's finances are on the mend. But the agency, Moody's Investors Service, cautioned that California's progress could easily stall given the state's roller-coaster...
State GOP May Pick A Dealmaker For Its Revival
Anthony York @ latimes.com
Desperate to return to relevance, the battered California Republican Party is looking for salvation in a shrewd dealmaker and prolific fundraiser once known for advancing his party's interests in a Capitol dominated by Democrats.
Lawmaker Wants To Protect Cities From Frivolous Lawsuits Over A.d.a.
California lawmaker seeks to protect cities from frivolous lawsuits
Efforts To Change Marijuana Laws Gaining Momentum In Congress
Gene Johnson @ presstelegram.com
An effort is building in Congress to change U.S. marijuana laws, including moves to legalize the industrial production of hemp and establish a hefty federal pot tax.
Engineering Association Funded Shadowy Initiative Campaigns
Jon Ortiz @ blogs.sacbee.com
A group that backs privatizing public infrastructure engineering work gave $400,000 to a opaque out-of-state organization that injected millions of dollars -- and plenty of controversy -- into California's initiative campaigns last year.
Former Assemblyman Nolan Frizzelle dies at 91
Dan Smith @ sacbee.com
Former Republican Assemblyman Nolan Frizzelle, an Orange County conservative and backer of Barry Goldwater's presidential campaign in 1964, has died at his home in Folsom. He was 91.
GOP Legislators Want Feds To Investigate Fire Fund
California Republican legislators want the U.S. Attorney to investigate the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection for putting $3.6 million from legal settlements in an off-budget account.
GOP Lawmakers Want Probe Of Cal Fire Over Off-budget Account
Jeff Gottlieb @ latimes.com
State Republican legislators want federal prosecutors to investigate the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection for putting $3.6 million from legal settlements into an off-budget account.